HIV Prevention on the U.S.-Mexico Border

Addressing the Needs of Most-at-Risk Populations

Tijuana and Ciudad Juarez—Mexican cities bordering the United States—have both seen better days. On Tijuana’s Avenida Revolución, souvenirs are still on display, even though tourists from across the border in San Diego, California, are few and far between, scared away by reports of murders and kidnappings associated with drug wars between narcotraffickers and the military. However, just a few blocks from the once-bustling city center is the city’s vibrant red light district. Despite the danger and the global economic downturn, sex tourism is still very much in business. In Ciudad Juarez, across the border from El Paso, Texas, the scene is even more grim. The city’s center is filled with gutted buildings and faded signs, and tourism has evaporated. On the front lines of one of the most violent drug wars in recent history, Juarez now holds the dubious distinction of having the world’s highest homicide rate (Carlsen 2010).

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2010

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